Cancer help delivered to mailbox, for free

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by Jacki Donaldson, The Cancer Blog, 27 Oct 2006

Living Beyond Breast Cancer (LBBC) -- a nonprofit organization dedicated to empowering all women affected by breast cancer to live as long as possible with the best quality of life -- recently began offering a new resource for breast cancer survivors, for both the newly diagnosed and those with metastatic disease.

"The first few weeks after diagnosis can be extremely difficult emotionally, and women with advanced disease often do not get the support and resources they need," said Jean Sachs, LBBC executive director. "We want to give them an understanding of their choices to help them make informed decisions regarding their physical and emotional health."

This understanding comes in the form of a 28-page brochure -- What to expect . . . today, tomorrow and beyond: Steps for coping with the medical, emotional and practical concerns of breast cancer -- available free on the Internet or by request. This guide, a road map, addresses topics such as coping with the news of a new diagnosis, telling family and friends, understanding pathology reports, choosing a medical team, asking for help, and finding support.

LBBC offers multiple addidtional resources -- including specialized navigation tools on its website that lead to a wealth of information. Visitors can Learn More about LBBC. They can Stay Informed through news, message boards, and other resources. They can Participate in events and programs. And they can Support LBBC through volunteer efforts and financial donations.

LBBC was founded in 1991 by a radiation oncologist who focused exclusively on meeting the needs of women post-treatment. She ran the organization out of the third floor of her home using volunteers. Few resources existed for women affected by breast cancer at the time, and so she tried to fill the void. In 1986, an executive director came on board, increased the LBBC budget from $100,000 to $1.8 million per year, expanded all programs and services, and worked to secure LBBC as a solid, dependable resource for all women, of all stages of breast cancer and in all phases of treatment and recovery. And now, in 2006, that is exactly what it is.

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